Readings for each week are taken from the required books, listed on the Syllabus, and additional texts cited in the schedule as they appear.



Irving, Washington. Diedrich Knickerbocker’s A History of New-York. Chicago, IL: W. B. Conkey, 1806. Book I, chapter V; Book III, chapter III; Book VI, chapter V; Book VII, chapter XI.
2 Haudenosaunee: The people of the longhouse

Ordeal of the Longhouse, chapters 1-4.

Island at the Center of the World, chapters 1-4.

Pilkington, Walter, ed. “Speech of Onoonghwandekha at the Funeral of a Seneca, 7 April 1765.” In The Journals of Samuel Kirkland: 18th Century Missionary to the Iroquois, Government Agent, and Father of Hamilton College. Clinton, NY: Hamilton College, 1980, pp. 23-25.

3 New France, New Netherland, New England, New York

Goodfriend, Joyce. Before the Melting Pot: Society and Culture in Colonial New York, 1664-1730. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1994, chapters 1-3. ISBN: 9780691037875.

Wilder, Craig Steven. In the Company of Black Men: The African Influence on African American Culture in New York City. New York, NY: NYU Press, 2005, chapter 1. ISBN: 9780814793695.

Reps, John W. The Making of Urban America: A History of City Planning in the United States. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1992, chapter 6. ISBN: 9780691006185.

4 Trade and social transformation

New York Before Chinatown, chapters 1-3.

Chants Democratic, chapters 1-2.

White, Shane. Somewhat More Independent: The End of Slavery in New York City, 1770-1810. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, 2004, chapters 1-2. ISBN: 9780820323749.

Copeland, David A. “The New York Public Education Controversy, 1753-1744.” Debating the Issues in Colonial Newspapers: Primary Documents on Events of the Period. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2000, chapter 13. ISBN: 9780313309823.

5 The greatest city in North America

Crabgrass Frontier, chapters 1-2.

Blackmar, Elizabeth. Manhattan for Rent, 1785-1850. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1991, chapters 1-2. ISBN: 9780801499739.

City of Eros, chapters 2-4.

Asbury, Herbert. The Gangs of New York: An Informal History of the Underworld. New York, NY: Vintage, 2008, ISBN: 9780307388988.

Dickens, Charles. American Notes: A Journey. London, England: Chapman and Hall, 1842, chapter 6.

Whitman, Walt. “Crossing Brooklyn Ferry.” In Leaves of Grass, 1855.

6 The era of the Civil War

Schecter, Barnet. The Devil’s Own Work: The Civil War Draft Riots and the Fight to Reconstruct America. New York, NY: Walker & Co., 2007, chapter 4. ISBN: 970802715081.

Commager, Henry Steele, and Milton Cantor, eds. “Mayor Fernando Wood’s Recommendation for the Secession of New York City.” In Documents of American History, Vol. 1: to 1898. 10th ed. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1988. ISBN: 9780132172745.

Kuo Wei Tchen, John. “Quimbo Appo’s Fear of Fennians: Chinese-Irish-Anglo Relations in New York City.” Bayor, Ronald H., and Timothy J. Meagher, eds. In The New York Irish. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997, chapter 5. ISBN: 9780801857645.

Blackmar, Elizabeth, and Roy Rosenzweig. The Park and the People: A History of Central Park. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1998, chapters 1-2. ISBN: 9780801497513.

7 Metropolis: post-bellum New York City

The Monied Metropolis, chapters 4-6.

Pratt, John W. “Boss Tweed’s Welfare Program.” New York Historical Quarterly 45 (1961): 396-411.

Plunkitt, George Washington, and William L. Riordon. “On The Shame of the Cities,” “Brooklynites: Natural-Born Hayseeds,” and “Tammany Leaders Not Bookworms.” In Plunkitt of Tammany Hall. New York, NY: McClure, Philips, & Co., 1905. Chapters 7, 10, and 11.

Steffens, Lincoln. “New York: Good Government to the Test.” The Shame of the Cities. New York, NY: McClure, Philips, & Co., 1904.

8 The house of labor

Moore, Deborah Dash. At Home in America: Second Generation New York Jews. New York, NY: Columbia University Press, 1981, chapter 2. ISBN: 9780231050630.

Working Class New York, Introduction & chapter 2.

Doyle, Joe. “Striking for Ireland on the New York Docks.” The New York Irish, chapter 14.

Hood, Clifton. 722 Miles: The Building of the Subways and How They Transformed New York. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2004, chapter 4. ISBN: 9780801880544.

9 Crime: disorganized and organized

Fried, Albert. The Rise and Fall of the Jewish Gangster in America. New York, NY: Columbia University Press, 1994, chapter 4. ISBN: 9780231096836.

Joselit, Jenna Weissman. Our Gang: Jewish Crime and the New York Jewish Community, 1900-1940. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1983, chapter 6. ISBN: 9780253203144.

English, E. J. Paddy Whacked: The Untold Story of the Irish American Gangster. New York, NY: Harper, 2006, chapter 5. ISBN: 9780060590031.

10 Sexuality, gender, and race

Gay New York, chapters 5-9.

Selections of Bruce Nugent’s interview in Kisseloff, Jeff. You Must Remember This: An Oral History of Manhattan from the 1890s to World War II. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2000, pp. 285-289. ISBN: 9780801863066.

Lewis, David Levering. When Harlem was in Vogue. New York, NY: Penguin, 1997, chapter 7. ISBN: 9780140263343.

11 The suburbanization of the American Dream

Crabgrass Frontier, chapters 9-10.

Caro, Robert. The Power Broker. New York, NY: Knopf, 1974, chapters 34-39. ISBN: 9780394480763.

12 The urbanization of America’s decline

Wilder, Craig Steven. A Covenant with Color: Race and Social Power in Brooklyn. New York, NY: Columbia University Press, 2001, chapter 9. ISBN: 9780231119078.

Working Class New York, chapters 11, 15.

Kim, Kwang Chung. Koreans in the Hood: Conflict with African Americans. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1999, chapter 6. ISBN: 9780801861048.

Sánchez Korrol, Virginia E. From Colonia to Community: The History of Puerto Ricans in New York City. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1994, chapter 2. ISBN: 9780520079007.

Rieder, Jonathan. Canarsie: The Jews and Italians of Brooklyn Against Liberalism. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1987, chapter 1. ISBN: 9780674093614.

13 Urban revival in the age of corporatism

Working Class New York, chapters 16-18.

Articles on gentrification and Times Square revitalization

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